Notice of Payment Card Security Incident

July 7, 2022

Chicken Express and its independent franchisees value our customers and treat the protection of their payment card information as a matter of utmost importance. In May of 2020, several Chicken Express franchisees were notified by the payment card networks of information which indicated a risk of malicious attempts by third parties to gain unauthorized access to credit card data processed by their point-of-sale systems. Chicken Express promptly engaged an internationally recognized forensic investigation firm to independently investigate these matters in coordination with the payment card brands. This investigation is now complete.

What Happened?

The investigation found evidence of attempts to compromise the point of purchase systems at Chicken Express franchise locations at varying times over the period beginning in March of 2017 and ending in January of 2022, and, in some cases, the installation of malicious software code that was designed to capture payment card information. All such malicious software code and related systems vulnerabilities were removed or remediated during the investigation.

What Information Was Involved?

The malicious software code sought to capture the payment card information processed by the point-of-sale systems during purchase transactions at Chicken Express franchise locations, which included cardholder name, payment card number, expiration date, card verification value, and service code. This information did not include PINs or the card verification value that is printed on the back or front of cards.

If you made a purchase using a payment card at a Chicken Express franchise location during the subject timeframe, your information may have been affected.

What We Are Doing.

We took measures to address the incident, and at this time the investigation and remediation of this incident is complete. We are updating the procedures and franchisee requirements relating to information technology system security, including those relating to payment card security, to provide additional protections and enhance the security of payment card information.

What You Can Do.

We encourage everyone to maintain heightened awareness of the possibility of payment card fraud by regularly reviewing the charges on their accounts for any unauthorized activity. Any unauthorized charges should be immediately reported to the payment card company. Payment card terms often state that cardholders are not responsible for timely-reported unauthorized charges.

ADDITIONAL STEPS YOU CAN TAKE

We are required by law to provide you with the following information. You may obtain a copy of your credit report, free of charge, once every 12 months from each of the three nationwide credit reporting companies. To order your annual free credit report, please visit www.annualcreditreport.com or call toll free at 1-877-322-8228.

Contact information for the three nationwide credit reporting companies is as follows:

Equifax, PO Box 740241, Atlanta, GA 30374, www.equifax.com, 1-800-685-1111
Experian, PO Box 2002, Allen, TX 75013, www.experian.com, 1-888-397-3742
TransUnion, PO Box 2000, Chester, PA 19016, www.transunion.com, 1-800-916-8800

If you believe you are the victim of identity theft or have reason to believe your personal information has been misused, you should immediately contact the Federal Trade Commission and/or the Attorney General’s office in your state. You can obtain information from these sources about steps an individual can take to avoid identity theft as well as information about fraud alerts and security freezes. You should also contact your local law enforcement authorities and file a police report. Obtain a copy of the police report in case you are asked to provide copies to creditors to correct your records. Contact information for the Federal Trade Commission is as follows:

Federal Trade Commission, Consumer Response Center, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20580, 1-877-IDTHEFT (438-4338), www.ftc.gov/idtheft

Fraud Alerts: There are two types of fraud alerts you can place on your credit report to put your creditors on notice that you may be a victim of fraud—an initial alert and an extended alert. You may ask that an initial fraud alert be placed on your credit report if you suspect you have been, or are about to be, a victim of identity theft. An initial fraud alert stays on your credit report for one (1) year. You may have an extended alert placed on your credit report if you have already been a victim of identity theft with the appropriate documentary proof. An extended fraud alert stays on your credit report for seven years. You can place a fraud alert on your credit report by contacting any of the three national credit reporting agencies.

Credit Freezes: You have the right to put a credit freeze, also known as a security freeze, on your credit file, free of charge, so that no new credit can be opened in your name without the use of a PIN that is issued to you when you initiate a freeze. A security freeze is designed to prevent potential credit grantors from accessing your credit report without your consent. If you place a security freeze, potential creditors and other third parties will not be able to get access to your credit report unless you temporarily lift the freeze. Therefore, using a security freeze may delay your ability to obtain credit.

Unlike a fraud alert, you must separately place a security freeze on your credit file at each credit reporting company. For information and instructions to place a security freeze, contact each of the credit reporting agencies at the addresses below:

Experian Security Freeze, PO Box 9554, Allen, TX 75013, www.experian.com
TransUnion Security Freeze, PO Box 2000, Chester, PA 19016, www.transunion.com
Equifax Security Freeze, PO Box 105788, Atlanta, GA 30348, www.equifax.com

To request a security freeze, you will need to provide the following information:

  1. Your full name (including middle initial as well as Jr., Sr., II, III, etc.)
  2. Social Security number
  3. Date of birth
  4. Proof of current address such as a current utility bill or telephone bill
  5. If you have moved in the past five years, the addresses where you have lived over the prior five years
  6. A legible photocopy of a government issued identification card (state driver’s license or ID card, military identification, etc.)
  7. If you are a victim of identity theft, a copy of the police report, investigative report, or complaint to a law enforcement agency concerning identity theft

The credit reporting agencies have one business day after receiving your request by toll-free telephone or secure electronic means, or three business days after receiving your request by mail, to place a security freeze on your credit report. The credit bureaus must also send written confirmation to you within five business days and provide you with a unique personal identification number (“PIN”) or password or both that can be used by you to authorize the removal or lifting of the security freeze.

To lift the security freeze in order to allow a specific entity or individual access to your credit report, or to lift a security freeze for a specified period of time, you must submit a request through a toll-free telephone number, a secure electronic means maintained by a credit reporting agency, or by sending a written request via regular, certified, or overnight mail to the credit reporting agencies and include proper identification (name, address, and Social Security number) and the PIN or password provided to you when you placed the security freeze as well as the identity of those entities or individuals you would like to receive your credit report or the specific period of time you want the credit report available. The credit reporting agencies have one hour after receiving your request by toll-free telephone or secure electronic means, or three business days after receiving your request by mail, to lift the security freeze for those identified entities or for the specified period of time.

To remove the security freeze, you must submit a request through a toll-free telephone number, a secure electronic means maintained by a credit reporting agency, or by sending a written request via regular, certified, or overnight mail to each of the three credit bureaus and include proper identification (name, address, and Social Security number) and the PIN number or password provided to you when you placed the security freeze. The credit bureaus have one hour after receiving your request by toll-free telephone or secure electronic means, or three business days after receiving your request by mail, to remove the security freeze.